It was back in December 2008 that I logged my first contact from the Alpine National Park as the beginning of my efforts to achieve the Keith Roget Memorial National Parks Award.
I remember it well. I had packed my old FTDX100 into the back of the car along with a DC power cable and a big sealed lead acid battery. I dropped my daughter off at a camp and then stopped by the National Park on my way home.
I made three QSOs on 20 metres with a quad loop before the rain moved me on.
At the time I blogged that I only needed 14 more Parks to achieve the award.
Now, over four years later, I have activated all the National Parks in Victoria and today I received a beautiful certificate from Amateur Radio Victoria in recognition of my efforts.
Along the way I have seen a wide variety of terrain, flora and fauna and worked many different stations.
I have logged more than 600 QSOs from inside National Parks. I have used five different radios and antenna configurations including quad loop, inverted vee, trapped dipole and ground planes. I have worked stations from 19 different DXCC entities.
But, I’m not finished yet. I’m still keen to keep visiting National Parks and my next challenge is to activate 15 Parks QRP, then 25 QRP and finally 45 with QRP. At present I have activated 12 Parks QRP so I still have a few to go. I’m guessing another 2 or 3 years should do it.
Thanks to all I have worked along the way.